The tournament is over and we have a winner but, to the astonishment of everyone in attendance, it is not Annette Obrestad standing in the winner's circle at this PokerStars-sponsored event. After running good to such an extent that we began to doubt the truth of the statistics we once believed responsible for governing the fall of the cards, Obrestad entered her heads-up match with American Reuben Peters as the massive chip leader but was unable to close the deal. Annette watched her lead evaporate as Peters pulled even before claiming this title for himself.
When the final nine players took their seats at the afternoon's onset, Obrestad was sitting in first position with a sizable lead over the rest of the field.
As things progressed we watched player after player fall victim to the juggernaut also known as Annette_15. We were already familiar with her reputation of going on heaters but what we saw today verged on the eerie as Obrestad picked up a seemingly endless series of monster hands.
The first player on the Obrestad chopping block was Denmark's Casper Hansen. Obrestad opened from under the gun and Hansen shipped the rest of his chips over the top.
Annette calmly called and tabled pocket aces which had Hansen's pocket queens crushed. Obrestad's hand held up and she added a few more chips to her already-imposing tower.
Annette then proceeded to dispatch both Michael Durrer and Daan Ruiter before setting her sights on the only other player within striking distance of her stack, Reijo Manninen. In another example of the way Obrestad was running this evening she nailed an inside straight draw on the river to take a massive $1.1 million pot.
It started with Annette opening to $30,000, with blinds of $6,000/$12,000, after it was folded to her on the button and Manninen making the call from the big blind. The flop came 8♠ 5♥ 3♦ and after a check from Reijo, Obrestad fired $43,000. Manninen then check-raised to $110,000.
Unfazed, Annette re-raised to $243,000, a move that we would come to appreciate all the more when we saw her cards at showdown.
They both checked the 3♣ on the turn and when the 4♦ hit the river Manninen hesitantly check-called a big $300,000 bet from Annette. Obrestad tabled her cards and we saw she had come all that way with just A-2.
At this point Obrestad had more chips than all three of her opponents combined, well over half the chips in play. Obrestad's next victim was none other than Trond Eidsvig, whom PL.com first met when he made the final table at the EPT event in Barcelona earlier this season.
The final hand of Eidsvig's tournament began with Reuben Peters opening from the button, Obrestad putting in her ubiquitous re-raise from the small blind and Trond shipping it from the big.
Peters thought for a moment before passing but Obrestad, again very calmly, announced call and tabled yet another pocket pair of aces. The frustration was plain to see on Eidsvig's face as he rolled pocket jacks that would be unable to crack Annette's bullets.
The madness would not end there though, as Reijo Manninen would soon find out, and Obrestad's ability to run good still had a bit of mileage left before it would eventually tank.
Obrestad opened the pot and Manninen moved all-in. It was substantially more back to Annette and, despite the weakness of her hand and the apparent tightness of her opponent, she made the call with A♠ 3♣. Manninen tabled A♥ J♦ and it looked like he was destined for a double-up.
The flop hit neither player but the trey on the turn spelled disaster for Manninen. With everything that had happened leading up to this suck-out there was a palpable sentiment of disbelief in the room as that three hit the felt.
At this point it seemed a foregone conclusion that Andy Black hit the rail Annette was left as the one truly big name. That having been said, this final table was one of the most interesting that PL.com has had the opportunity to observe. Despite not taking home the win and regardless of the breaks that she caught, Obrestad has further cemented herself as one of the truly brilliant players in the game today. The fact that she's still only 19 makes it all the more impressive.
PL.com is now headed back across the pond to our native Canadia to begin preparations for our next live tournament rampage. Next on our hit list is the WSOP Circuit event in Lake Tahoe on November 16, APPT Macau on the 23rd and the Caribbean Poker Classic which gets underway on the 30th. For now PL.com is going to continue feeding its live update obsession at one of Dublin's many pubs, reporting on the quality and quantity of the local beverages. Don't worry; we'll have a Guinness or two for you.